|Date of Birth||May 21, 1897|
|Place of Birth||Owatowna, Minnesota|
|Country||United States of America|
|Next of Kin||Alvin Heminger, father, Bienfait, Saskatchewan|
|Trade / Calling||Farmer|
|Service Record||Link to Service Record|
|Battalion||1st Depot Battalion, Saskatchewan Regiment|
|Force||Canadian Expeditionary Force|
|Enlisted / Conscripted||Conscripted|
|Address at Enlistment||Bienfait, Sasktchewan|
|Date of Enlistment||May 7, 1918|
|Age at Enlistment||21|
|Theatre of Service||Great Britain|
|Prisoner of War||No|
|Date of Death||June 17, 1967|
|Age at Death||70|
|Buried At||Lake of the Woods Cemetery, Kenora, Ontario|
William David Heminger was born on 21 May 1897 in Owatonna, Minnesota, USA. His father Alvie Heminger was from Indiana while his mother Nellie Wentworth was from Minnesota. The couple married on 29 November 1894 in Owatonna. With the addition of daughter Rose born in February, the 1900 census found the family living in Ellington, Dodge, Minnesota where Alvie was working as a tobacco farmer. In 1902 the family immigrated to Canada to farm in Bienfait near Estevan in Saskatchewan. Another child, daughter Leone, was born in 1904 or 1905 in Saskatchewan.
With occupation given as farmer and his father in Bienfait as next of kin, William signed his recruitment papers in Regina with the 1st Depot Battalion Saskatchewan Regiment on 7 May 1918. He’d had his medical examination the previous November in Estevan. William embarked from Montreal for overseas aboard the Cassandra on July 28th. Once in England he was transferred to the 15th Reserve Battalion. William was admitted to the No 12 Canadian General Hospital at Bramshott in early October suffering from influenza. Discharged on October 14 he was readmitted on November 18 for 19 days with a case of the mumps. William was to serve in Britain and returned to Canada aboard the Aquitania that embarked from Southampton on 14 June 1919.
William returned to Bienfait after the war but by 1924 had moved to Keewatin in northwestern Ontario to work as a packer at the Lake of the Woods Milling Company. He married the former Maggie Young. Born in 1896 in Maybole, Scotland, Maggie had immigrated to Canada in 1911, arriving in Quebec on 21 October aboard the Grampian with her mother Helen (née Shaw) Young and some of her siblings. Her father Thomas had arrived in Canada a couple of years earlier, settling in Elkhorn, Manitoba with the family later moving to Keewatin. Maggie had previously been married to Alexander George Matheson. William and Maggie gave birth to two sons, John in 1925 and William in 1931.
William was a member of the Keewatin United Church and the Keewatin Branch of the Canadian Legion. After retiring from the mill in 1962 he and Maggie moved to Winnipeg. William died on 17 June 1967 in the King Edward Hospital, Winnipeg. He was predeceased by his mother Nellie in Bienfait in 1933 and his father Alvie in 1943 in Kenora. At the time of his death he was survived by his wife Maggie, son John of Thompson, Manitoba, son William of Winnipeg and nine grandchildren. He was also survived by his sisters Rose (Les) Graham of Estevan and Leone (Arnold) Fredin of Geraldton. Maggie died on 7 June 1987 in the Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg. William is interred in the Lake of the Woods Cemetery, Kenora where there is also a memorial for Maggie. Son John died in 2010 in Dauphin and is interred with his wife Doreen in the Lake of the Woods Cemetery. Son William died in 2012 in Brandon and is interred in the Brandon Cemetery.
by Judy Stockham